North Thompson Fair & Rodeo brings 65 years of living history to the Valley

The award winning North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo has come of age this year! This will be the fair’s 65th year, and organizers say the celebration happens on this upcoming Labour Day weekend of Aug. 30, 31, and Sept. 1, in Barriere. B.C.

“We’ve learned a lot in the past 65 years,” says NTFFRA president Jill Hayward, “We’ve learned good cowboy advice such as ‘don’t squat with your spurs on’, or ‘don’t corner something that would normally run from you’! “All kidding aside though, what we have learned most over the years is that volunteers are what keep our organization growing, and it’s those volunteers that make each and every one of our annual fall fair and rodeos the great successes that they have been. We might live, work and play with these folks on a daily basis, or we might not see them all year, but when it’s fair time we all gather together with the same mindset – to produce a memorable family fun event that will keep people wanting to return each year. I am very proud to say that that is exactly what we do.”

Hayward adds that this year’s event will be ideal for all ages of fairgoers, “Right from little kids to folks who can claim they are 100, we believe this year’s event will deliver plenty of enjoyment and make good memories for them all.”

The big parade will travel through Barriere on Saturday, culminating in the rodeo arena, where opening ceremonies will take place and then be followed by three days of BCRA fast paced rodeo action.

“Stand up and cheer” will be the order of the afternoons as pony chariots and chuckwagon racing tear up the track during the rodeo performances, as well as trick riders taking their craft to amazing performances during the intermissions.
An outdoor stage has a full line-up of country and western music with Gordie West, Butch Falk, Hugh McLennan, renowned magician Clinton W. Gray, and of course Uncle Chris the Clown, with surprise cameo appearances by talented local entertainers.

Favourites this year will be the Friday night family dance (all ages welcome and alcohol free), the traditional cabaret dance on Saturday night, and the Sunday evening Cowboy Concert, all in the fall fair hall. Don’t miss feature entertainer Eli Barsi singing at the Cowboy Concert, and the well known all-girl cowboy band Horse Crazy.

Livestock shows, 4H competitions and Light Horse events will run throughout the weekend as will the Heavy Horse competitions where the gentle giants show just how much “pull” they have.

The crowd pleasing lawn tractor races will have the dust flying before the rodeo gets underway and the youngsters will find a great assortment of attractions to keep them busy around the indoor picnic area next to the food court.
Make sure you stop in to the North Thompson Agriplex Banquet Hall where you will find a number of interesting vendor displays, and where you will also find a large heritage display regarding the Fall Fair and Rodeo’s 65 years of history. Check out the old photos, memorabilia, and sit down with one of the many scrapbooks and help us identify who the folks are in some of those photos from years gone by.
Those with adventure in their bones can try their hand at the climbing wall, the mechanical bull, the maze for all ages, or kids’ amusements like bouncy castle, the mechanical swings and ride the train.

The fairgrounds will be filled with games, commercial exhibits, concessions, and an exhibit hall that can easily supply an afternoon of entertainment while you learn about the agriculture, lifestyle, and culture that the North Thompson Valley has to offer.

Visitors can sit in the shade of the companion garden, pat a pony, enjoy an ice cream, participate in a free workshop or meet a 4-H family.

“For three days folks will be able to fully experience the sights, sounds, smells and nostalgia of a real country fair,” says Hayward, “You can pick a carrot fresh from the companion garden, sing along with great musicians, learn about valley heritage, visit with friends, and even feel the wind in your hair as the pony chariots or chuckwagons thunder past. We’re inviting everyone to come to the fair and help us celebrate our 65th event!”

For more information go to http://www.fallfair-rodeo.com. Find us on Twitter and Facebook, or download our App.
LOOKING FOR 65 ENTRIES IN THE FALL FAIR PARADE!

It’s time to start gathering and arranging everything needed to decorate your entry for the Fall Fair Parades, whether it is the main parade on Saturday, Aug. 30, or the family parade on Monday, Sept. 1.

This year will be the 65th anniversary of the North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo, and organizers say they are putting out the challenge to have at least 65 entries in this years Saturday parade!

Start planning your entry now. What will you pick for your float theme? Will it be a barnyard, scarecrows, a heritage theme or something funny that will make everyone laugh? What kind of costumes (if any) will you dress up in? Cowboys and cowgirls, or straw hats, coveralls and britches? How about old fashioned top hats and long dresses, or maybe prospector outfits complete with a mule or two?

The main parade has prizes for the Best Float (commercial, club, and group), Decorated Cars (commercial, group/club, and individual), Antique Cars, Best Costume – Walking (group, individual and comic), Best Horse and Rider (authentic, comic, group), and Best Horse Under Harness. Top prize for the Best Overall Float comes with a cheque for $400 generously sponsored by Gilbert Smith Forest Products Ltd. Second prize receives $250, and third prize $150.

The family parade has prizes for Decorated Tricycle, Decorated Bicycle (pair, group and individual), Motorized Unit (which includes scooters!), Decorated Wagon, Decorated Stroller, Best Dressed Cowboy, Best Dressed Cowgirl, Best Dressed Super Hero, Best Costumes (general), Costumed Child and Pet (pair, group and individual), Costumed Child on Horse (pair, group and individual), and Best Group on Float.

Find entry information, muster times, and contact info by picking up a North Thompson Fall Fair & Rodeo entry catalogue at local newsstands, businesses and the Star/Journal office, or by going to: http://www.fallfair-rodeo.com and clicking on ‘2014 Fall Fair & Rodeo Catalogue’.

1950 – 2014 NORTH THOMPSON FALL FAIR & RODEO CELEBRATES 65 YEARS

THEN: Back in 1950, what had been a dream for local farm and ranch families became a reality. The Native Sons of Canada lent their Louis Creek grounds and hall for the first fall fair which was held on Labour Day. The fall fair entry catalogue had just 12 pages, and promised: “To make your Labour Day a real holiday, a full round of entertainment during the day and evening is assured”. An estimated 500 people attended that first fair. Len Johnson, the first fair manager, made the following statement 64 years ago, “For a fair to be a success, it must first be centered in a farming district, and secondly, it must have the support of the people of the community.”

Len’s words have rung true. Fueled by outstanding volunteerism since its inception, the North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo (NTFFR) has steadily evolved and expanded. The location has changed, and so have many of the faces, although many remain, and familiar family names continue to support the NTFFR. After 65 years the focus is the same as it was back in 1950: “A celebration of agriculture, livestock, western country living and community spirit”.

TODAY the North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo is in its 65th year, and is one of the leading regional events within the Thompson Nicola Regional District.

The mission statement of the organization is: To encourage, develop and promote the advancement of agriculture and farm living in the North Thompson Valley, with special reference to the fostering of livestock, crops, orchard crops, poultry husbandries, industrial, commercial, educational, mechanical and household arts, and rural and urban young peoples organizations, 4H competitions, livestock competitions, fine arts, sewing and baking, gardening, bee keeping, and volunteerism at its finest.

The NTFFRA functions with a volunteer Board of Directors along with an additional 75-100 dedicated community volunteers. Facility enhancements and upgrades are in almost all instances completed by volunteers. Major upgrades such as electrical, welding, carpentry, etc., are often provided by local contractors at cost, and with much done as in-kind donations. The annual budget for the Fall Fair and Rodeo is in excess of $250,000, and to this date the NTFFRA remains debt free.

Over the past five years 10,000 – 11,000 visitors have converged on the small community of Barriere during the week of the Fall Fair and Rodeo, bringing with them an estimated economic impact of $525,000. Eighty-five percent of the visitors are from the Kamloops and Lower Mainland areas. More than 85 percent of the expenditures are purchased from local businesses.

Notably, in March of 2011 the NTFFRA embraced a vision of constructing the North Thompson Agriplex; a multi-use agricultural facility to serve the region and beyond. In less than six months, thanks to volunteers, businesses, contractors, supporters and sponsors the building was erected and able to host the 62nd Fall Fair and Rodeo. Most importantly, the community buy-in to the project was phenomenal; over $730,00 raised (including $188,000 in-kind donations) to complete phase one of the project. In 2012, phase two of the project has been funded by the BC Community Recreation Program.

The fall fair facility holds on average over 100 events annually; serving local, regional, and provincial needs. The public demonstrates a willingness to participate in activities at the facility, not just seasonally, but throughout the year; and with the addition of the North Thompson Agriplex the number of events has already started to rise significantly. The NTFFRA recognizes, that with continued positive growth and expansion within the facility, that the direct economic growth to the community of Barriere and the surrounding area remains immediate and significant.

The dream that was started 65 years ago lives on today, because of unending community spirit and the hard-working dedicated volunteers who continue to make it all happen.

The legacy lives on! The dream lives on because a group of volunteers and participants work hard together each year to keep it so.

ROYALTY AT NORTH THOMPSON FALL FAIR AND RODEO SINCE 1950

The North Thompson Fall Fair & Rodeo Association’s Ambassador Program has a rich history that dates back to 1950, this program has the honour of being the third oldest Royalty Pageant in the Province of British Columbia!

Originally called ‘The Queen Pageant’, the Association changed the name in 2012 to the ‘NTFFRA Ambassador Program’ in an effort to better reflect the purposes of the program now being offered. At that time, the Program Committee made a number of improvements to the curriculum, bringing it up to modern day standards without losing its valued traditions.

The NTFFRA Ambassador Program is geared towards building self-confidence, personal awareness and self-motivation, all the while having “a whole lot of fun”. The committee stresses that this is not a “beauty contest”, or a “most popular girl contest”, rather a search for the newest Youth Ambassadors to proudly represent the North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo Association and the entire North Thompson Valley.

The NTFFRA Ambassador Program is open to any young lady enrolled in grades 9 through 11, who is a resident of the North Thompson Valley. Home schooled young ladies are welcome to participate.

Each year the new candidates are provided with training in the areas of public speaking, self-defence, equine awareness, hair and skin care, modeling, dancing, resume writing, proper etiquette, North Thompson Valley information and history, and the history of the NTFFRA. In some years other training may be available.

Candidates also have an opportunity to travel as a group to other communities as they help to promote their area and participate in the candidate training process.

A number of bursaries are available to the candidates who take part in the program, and these are awarded at the annual NTFFRA Ambassador Coronation held in late August.

The committee is sensitive to the financial burdens that for some may be a reality; therefore, the cost to both the candidates and their families is kept minimal. Fund raising, community service, and the many wonderful candidate sponsors who step forward each year are the biggest part of the program’s success.

If you would like more information on the North Thompson Fall Fair and Rodeo Association’s Ambassador Program please email: ntfallfair@gmail.com

2014 Ambassador candidates are
Annie Butcher
Lee Dionne
Jillian McInnes

RODEO

8 Major Events • Bareback • Saddle Bronc • Bull Riding • Steer Wrestling • Calf Roping • Team Roping • Barrel Racing • Breakaway Roping

4 Minor Events • Jr. Steer Riding • Jr. Barrel Racing • Jr. Breakaway Roping • Pee Wee Barrels

STOCK SUPPLIED BY WWE Rodeo Co. Fast Time Cattle Co.
For more information call Carmen Ross 672-9298

2014 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS – NORTH THOMPSON FALL FAIR & RODEO

All Hall Entry Forms – except flowers – must be in to the Fair Registration Secretary no later than Friday, August 22, 2014. Late Registration Fee of $5.00.
Flower entry forms ONLY will be accepted until 8:30 am Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014.

On grounds camping – $30 for the weekend.
Exhibitor fee – $8.
Gate Prices – Adult $12.00, Students/Seniors (65+) $8.00, Under 10 Free & Passes available.

THURSDAY, AUGUST 28

10:00 am – 8:00 pm …………………Placing Hall Entries

FRIDAY, AUGUST29

9:00 am – 8:00 pm ……… Placing Hall Entries
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm …… Sheep Weigh-in
7:00 pm ………………………………… Family Dance with Gordie West Fall Fair Hall (no alcohol) Minors Welcome

SATURDAY, AUGUST 30

7:00 – 8:30 am ……………… Placing Hall Entries
7:00 – 10:00 am …………… Lions Pancake Breakfast
8:45 am ………………………………… All hall exhibits must be in place for judging
9:00 am ………………………………… Exhibit Hall closes for judging
9:30 am ………………………………… Parade participants to assemble at the Family Dining Restaurant, Station Road, Airfield Road area for judging
9:30 am ………………………………… Beef, Poultry and Rabbits in Barn
10:00 am ……………………………… Rabbit Showing & Fitting and Judging Classes
11:00 am ……………………………… Parade moves out from Family Dining Restaurant
11:00 am ……………………………… Goat Show
12:00 pm ……………………………… Parade arrives at Fall Fair Grounds
12:30 – 1:30 pm …………… Horsemanship Demo

Official Fall Fair Opening in the Rodeo Arena

1:00 pm …………………………………… Exhibit Hall open to the public
1:00 pm …………………………………… Gymkhana
1:00 pm …………………………………… 4-H & Pre-Club Showmanship Classes
1:30 pm …………………………………… First performance of the B.C.R.A. Rodeo
1:30 pm …………………………………… Weight Beef Steers/Heifers Pony Chariot Races during Rodeo intermission
3:00 pm …………………………………… 4-H, Pre-Club & Open Female & Ram Classes to follow Showmanship Classes.
3:00 pm …………………………………… Light Horse Obstacle Course competition
6:00 pm (approx.)………… Pony Chuckwagon Races to follow Rodeo
6:30 pm …………………………………… Heavy Horse Pull in the Rodeo Arena following the Chuckwagon Races
8:00 pm…………………………………… Buildings close
8:00 pm – 1:00 am………… Cabaret Dance at the Fall Fair Hall (No Minors), advance tickets at Barriere Country Feeds ant at the Treasurer’s office (8:30am Saturday, Sept. 1st) no tickets available at the door
TBA…………………………………………… Lawn Tractor Races and Bingo

SUNDAY, AUGUST 31

7:00 – 10:00 am……………… Lions Pancake Breakfast
9:00 am…………………………………… Western Horse Show starts in the Horse Arena
9:00 am…………………………………… Heavy Horses Halter Classes

Buildings open

10:00 am………………………………… Rabbit and Cavy Classes
10:00 am………………………………… Cowboy Church Service on Outdoor Stage

Hall prize money may be picked up Sunday or Monday, at Fair Office on grounds

10:00 am………………………………… 4-H & Open Rabbit Classes in Poultry Barn
11:00 am………………………………… Showing of 4-H Beef and Open Classes
12:00 pm………………………………… Heavy Horse Log Skid in the Light Horse Arena – Single Skid Jackpot
12:00 pm ……………………………… 4-H, Pre-club & Open Weight Classes with Championship Classes to follow.
1:00 pm – 4:00 pm………… Free Agri-workshops
1:30 pm…………………………………… Second performance of the B.C.R.A. Rodeo
3:30 pm…………………………………… Pony Chariot Races during Rodeo intermission
5:30 pm…………………………………… Pony Chuckwagons after Rodeo ends
6:30 pm…………………………………… Heavy Horse Pull following Rodeo
7:30 pm…………………………………… Cowboy Concert, tickets available at Fall Fair Office or Barriere Country Feeds
TBA………………………………………… Lawn Tractor Races and Bingo

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 1

7:00 – 10:00 am……………… Lions Pancake Breakfast
9:00 am…………………………………… Family Parade assembles at Barriere Secondary School
9:00 am…………………………………… English Horse Show starts in Horse Arena

Buildings open

10:00 am……………………………………Family Parade leaves BSS for Fall Fair Grounds
10:00 am……………………………………Sheep Trim & Fit
10:15 am……………………………………Heavy Horse, driving classes and multiple hitch in the Rodeo Arena
1:00 pm – 4:00 pm……………Free Agri-workshops
1:30 pm…………………………………… Third performance of the B.C.R.A. Rodeo
3:00 pm…………………………………… Hall Trophy Presentations
3:30 pm…………………………………… Pony Chariot Races during Rodeo intermission
4:00 pm…………………………………… Exhibit building closes to the public
4:30 pm…………………………………… Pick-up exhibits from Hall
5:30 pm…………………………………… Chuckwagon Races after Rodeo ends
TBA………………………………………… Lawn Tractor Races and Bingo

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